Narrator: Adenrele Ojo, Adam Lazarre-White
Series: The Honors #2
Published by HarperCollins
Published on 11 February 2020
Genres: Science Fiction, Young Adult
Source: my local library
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Savvy criminal turned skilled Leviathan pilot Zara Cole finds new friends and clashes with bitter enemies in the second book of this action-packed series from New York Times bestselling authors Rachel Caine and Ann Aguirre that's perfect for fans of The 100 and The Fifth Wave.
Zara Cole was a thief back on Earth, but she's been recently upgraded to intergalactic fugitive. On the run after a bloody battle in a covert war that she never expected to be fighting, Zara, her co-pilot Beatriz, and their Leviathan ship Nadim barely escaped the carnage with their lives.
Now Zara and her crew of Honors need a safe haven, far from the creatures who want to annihilate them. But they'll have to settle for the Sliver: a wild, dangerous warren of alien criminals. The secrets of the Sliver may have the power to turn the tide of the war they left behind--but in the wrong direction.
Soon Zara will have to make a choice: run from the ultimate evil--or stand and fight.
I really enjoyed this sequel, and it was worth the wait for my library to get it in audio.
Honor Bound takes off where Honor Among Thieves left us, with Nadim and Typhon both injured after their epic battle with the Phage and desperately needing medical attention and defences against the parasitical scourge. The Leviathans and their crews head towards a dodgy asteroid called the Sliver that seems to be some kind of outlaw post where violence and money rule, ruled by a non-binary honcho called Bassia. There, Zara has to do what is necessary to protect her weird little family, including gladiator fights that showcase just how special she is, and a space heist that leaves everyone in the universe at risk.
Honor Bound didn’t really feel like a filler book because so much happened. It was smartly plotted, the characters all grew in beautiful ways, and it was a treat to watch Zara, Nadim, and Bey bonding and growing ever closer as a strange little girlxshipxgirl poly relationship full of unconditional love, warmth and comfort. Seriously, I don’t know of any relationship in fiction that I like as much as I like this one.
Zara is hands down amazing, and her ability to find weaknesses in her enemies and exploit them have really come to the front as a kind of superpower. On the Sliver, we meet so many different kinds of aliens, including ones that look fierce but are really just overenthusiastic gamblers, and ones that look harmless but can kill in a second. I love seeing different kinds of life forms in sci-fi, and my favorites for this are the beautiful but deadly floating jellyfish, and I’m as enamoured by Bassia’s worship glamour as Zara is. I love the idea of this psychic presence overwhelming anyone close enough.
Although I already loved Nadim, seeing Zara grow closer to Bey was also a treat. I love Bey, she’s so straight and innocent and good, a perfect foil for Zara. Together with Nadim, they make a great little team and I love them with all my heart eye emojis.
Typhon even grows as a character. Man, that leviathan is deep, and watching him grow through Zara’s interactions with his crew is a ongoing lesson I’m willing to follow into the next book.
Overall, there is nothing that sucked about this book. It’s original, fierce, with lovable, rich characters with their own motivations, and offers me variations in life forms that satisfy my astrobiology background. It didn’t feel like a filler book, and I’m super excited to dive right into the next one.